Cianbro Construction rented a 180-foot Genie boomlift, the SX-180, to erect an observation wheel at the end of a long and narrow pier, near Washington, D.C. The Capital Wheel will offer views of the White House, Capitol building, the National Mall and Arlington National Ceremony, from the National Harbor, a 300-acre multi-use waterfront development in Prince George’s County, Maryland.

“If we were putting this up on land under normal circumstances, we’d have no issues accessing the axle and spoke connections with a standard 85-foot boom lift,” said Aric Dreher, project manager. “But because we are on a pier and had to first install the base steel structure, we were left with only two spots from which a boom could operate in order to have access to both sides of the wheel. And on one of those sides we are set back more than 85 feet and need to reach 90 feet into the air over the top and in between the tower legs – far more than a conventional piece of equipment could achieve.”

Cianbro contacted US Markets, an Elmhurst, Ill.-based equipment provider and aerial re-rental specialist working closely with Genie to introduce the SX-180 into the marketplace.

“This was definitely a case of things lining up nicely for everyone,” said Chad Cochrane, US Markets general manager. “We’d just taken delivery of one of the first SX-180s off Genie’s production line. Working closely with Genie’s field service team, we were able to satisfy Cianbro’s tight schedule, and ultimately be a part of this historic project.”

“The Genie boom, which we call ‘The Monster Lift’, has nicely filled that gap between what our 135-foot lift can and can’t reach,” added Dreher. “It was instrumental in the assembly of the tower legs themselves, but one of the most crucial areas of the construction involves setting the wheel’s ‘spokes’ into the hub or axle. The SX-180 boomlift allows us to get up and over the tower legs and then reach into the axle area to do each connection.”